Frank Ritz’s review published on Letterboxd:
This shouldn't work. It should be deplorable, convoluted, annoying, and pretentious. It should make me feel sick, I should hate this, I should never want to look at Vincent Gallo, and I should wash this away from my life. But I just can't. It just works. It's magical really. Brilliant performances all around, wild stylistic choices, and a moving tale of a horrible protagonist (that you somehow feel bad for (sometimes)) slowly learning to accept, take responsibility, and love. What more could you want? It doesn't exist in the real world, but it's similar; it operates solely in the realm of film, and that's what I think makes it brilliant. It's 110 minutes inside Gallo's brain as a creator, and what he wanted to put out into the world. It's acknowledging the worst parts of him, while trying to change. Maybe the world didn't treat Gallo the way he wanted/expected and he never learned, but luckily for all of us, Billy Brown did. Layla is a fantasy babe that operates exactly how Billy needs/wants her, but it's still not cloy, nor misogynistic, in it's treatment of her. She's the control. She's the power. She's the essence of love, and acceptance, and understanding, in human form; another lost and confused soul looking for someone to help. Who woulda thunk it was Billy though? That scene where she says she did want to go to the motel with him, at the red light, and the camera freeze frames on Billy's face looking distraught and confused, is one of the most powerful moments in all of cinema. A change occurred, and shook me to the core. We all deserve love.
This is always going to be one of my favorite movies, and it's influence on my future films can already be felt; ingrained in my psyche somewhere deep down. I relate to Billy in ways I wish I couldn't. It's scary, but just like him, I'll continue to learn and grow.